A Kamloops woman who alleges co-workers made disparaging remarks about her sexual orientation will have her complaint heard by the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal.
The preliminary ruling clears the way for a hearing Aug. 21-24.
In a decision released June 6, the tribunal declined to dismiss a claim by Kim Guiguet, 26, that NRI Distribution and some of its management employees violated the B.C. Human Rights Code by discriminating against her on grounds of perceived sexual orientation.
However, it rejected her claim of discrimination based on a mental disability she said was brought on by harassment.
The respondents deny they discriminated against Guiguet, who worked for the warehousing company as an inventory control technician from 2006 to 2011.
In the decision denying NRI’s application to dismiss the sexual-orientation harassment complaint without a hearing, tribunal member Murray Geiger-Adams said Guiguet does not present herself as feminine and acknowledges that people assume she is gay although she isn’t. She said she complained to superiors of harassment and was transferred but the problem continued.
While she was off work due to strep throat, Guiguet said she was called at home and told her employment was terminated.
To succeed on the second allegation of mental disability, the decision said she would have to prove an undiagnosed condition and that the respondents treated her adversely because of it.
Members of the tribunal are lawyers, appointed by lieutenant governor in council, who are experts in human rights law.